Would You Change Your Name?

Shurooq AlBanna (@Shuroooq)

Shurooq AlBanna (@Shuroooq)

Column: A Moment of Contemplation
Shurooq, an Emarati from Dubai, has been on a journey of self-discovery ever since she shifted career from Science to humanitarian where she found joy. Her interests include traveling and foreign films. Shurooq’s column is influenced by those distinctive moments that give a deeper perspective on life.
Shurooq AlBanna (@Shuroooq)

Latest posts by Shurooq AlBanna (@Shuroooq) (see all)

Reading Time: 3 minutes

The author considers why a friend of hers has changed her name drastically for social acceptance.

Artwork by Hamda AlMansoori (Instagram: @Planet64, twitter: @planetsixtyfour)

A few months ago, I encountered an old acquaintance and was surprised to find out that she no longer carried her first name that I used to know her by. The change was so drastic it was like changing your name to Sara after being known as Eponine (one of Les Misérables’ characters) all your life. This wasn’t a case of having an actor’s stage name, but a regular human being with a regular career.

Changing a name so drastically isn’t something I have come across much. Initially, I wondered how will she manage to change her name on every form of identity she owned. But then I wondered about the motive behind this behavior. When I asked, she honestly responded that after a lot of introspection, she chose a different name that was more ‘socially’ acceptable. It seems she was convinced that a more generic name that masked an ethnicity would break down many barriers to her success and progress.

It was interesting to me that she was bothered by an issue so deeply, which others might consider trivial.

Her reasoning triggered my judgments and made me think of my name, what it meant to me and how it related with my personality. My name is Shurooq, which is an Arabic name that means sunrise, and it is my identity everywhere I go. I love it, I am proud of it, and I humorously joke to everyone that I bring the sunshine wherever I go. Would I ever want to change it? No. I was content with it because I considered it a gift from my parents.

However, my friend was obviously dissatisfied enough to have taken such a decision. But do our names affect our lives more than we realize? It appears so.   According to Richard Wiseman, “people with names that have positive associations such as ‘Rose’ do especially well in life”*. Even at schools, “students whose names have undesirable associations experience high levels of social isolation” *.

This made sense to me. I remember how as children we would undermine others with ‘different’ names. Some of those silly nicknames we gave stayed until adulthood. No wonder my friend was discontented with her name.

Considering all of the above, I believe all parents should think twice before choosing a name for their babies. I considered ancestry and named my son Mohamed after his grandfather in the hope that he takes after him and grows up to be a kind, wise humanitarian. I wonder how my friend’s parents chose her birth name. After long discussions, I came to understand that my friend’s name change was not about giving up her identity but more about forging and developing it. Therefore, I hope it brings her the satisfaction she craves.

Now tell me, if you could change your name, what name would you choose? Or would you keep the name that has identified you so far?


* http://www.bakadesuyo.com/2012/03/does-your-name-affect-everything-in-your-life/#ixzz2bG5kP8Iv

Does Grief Need to Look the Same for Everyone?

Bahar Al Awadhi (@bahargpedram)

Bahar Al Awadhi (@bahargpedram)

Column Name: The Words Within
Bahar is a recruiter by profession, an aspiring writer by night, and a mom of toddler twins. She has an unending thirst for learning, as she completed her BComm in Canada, an MA in Dubai, and continues to develop herself with reading and research.
With her column, she shares her journey as she grows and learns more about this crazy beautiful world we live in.
Bahar Al Awadhi (@bahargpedram)

Latest posts by Bahar Al Awadhi (@bahargpedram) (see all)

Reading Time: 4 minutes

Funeral traditions and the consoling days and their one size fit all approach may not work for everyone.

Artwork by Nouf Bandar Elmoisheer (Instagram: @naufba)

Every beginning must have an end, and as such, so does the circle of life. Every life comes to an end as death does not escape anyone. It comes at varying times, a little too early for some, and never gives enough time or notice. People would rather avoid discussing this part of the life cycle, and instead, they wish one another a lifetime of a hundred years or more. However, just as every beginning must have an end, every end also has its beginning.

When death falls upon us, the ones closest to the deceased must also go through their own cycle – a cycle of grief. The griever is faced with a new set of emotions that they must feel and understand to be able to carry on living and reach what will be their new beginning. The Swiss Psychiatrist, Elisabeth Kubler-Ross, shared her views on dealing with grief in her book “On Death and Dying” published in 1969. She identified five stages that an individual must go through and they are as follows: Denial, Anger, Bargaining, Depression, and finally, Acceptance.

While people may experience only some of these stages, or perhaps in a different order, it is important to allow these emotions to be felt to reach closure and gain acceptance of the new way of life without their loved ones in it. However, I wonder, in this collective society where people all come together to console at the time of death, do we allow the griever to truly experience these stages? And if not, what happens to that individual’s emotions?

In our culture, when there is death, people from far and beyond come together to visit the grieving family. They come armed with good wishes and prayers, offering sympathy, or simply paying their respects out of a formality. It can be very calming for the griever to be surrounded by friends and family, and having company may ease some pain at such a difficult time, but I wonder, for those that have different ways of dealing with grief, or prefer their solitude, are they given that space? Or do they also need to maintain tradition and be present throughout the funeral and the consoling period, which is held over a period of three days beginning immediately upon burying the deceased? During these three days, the griever is also a host who has to maintain decorum and hospitality to ensure that the visitors are being taken care of and are well fed. It becomes an open house for people to come and go throughout the day while many continue their visits even after the three days are completed. It, therefore, can be another ritual that must be fulfilled to meet the needs of society and not the ones affected by this tragedy.

It is also not uncommon for family members to stay the night in the house of the deceased to keep the grievers company, as if to protect them from loneliness. But could such acts of over-generosity actually be suffocating to those who would rather find solace and peace in their solitude?

Being faced with death is certainly never easy for anyone, and having a full house can help fill the absence of the deceased and ease the pain of separation and loneliness, but it is also important to understand what the family truly needs and wants in this time of grief and despair, instead of simply following a standard custom. For those that may have a different way of grieving but are not given a chance, they may simply have to put their feelings on hold until the official mourning period is over. And that does not seem very compassionate to me. Everyone deserves to have their own time and space to deal with such a life changing event. Will there be a day where our culture allows people to grieve in a way that is right for them?

Organizational Structures Going Flat

Shof Elmoisheer (Instagram: @Bookish2525)

Shof Elmoisheer (Instagram: @Bookish2525)

Shof holds a Master’s degree in Marketing and a Bachelor in English literature. Avid reader of classic literature, her preferred type of fiction, along with psychology and marketing. Skilled at drawing, created a comic book, not yet published. Dedicated her Instagram feed to bookish recommendations. Fond of language learning, taught herself Japanese. In her column Thoughts of a Reader she reviews books, writes short stories, and talks Marketing.
Shof Elmoisheer (Instagram: @Bookish2525)

Latest posts by Shof Elmoisheer (Instagram: @Bookish2525) (see all)

Reading Time: 4 minutes

What is the flat organizational hierarchy and how is it used in management.

Every successful organization functions on some form of structure. The traditional hierarchy has long been the management strategy, with the staff being at the bottom supervised by managers who in turn are supervised by executives. However, that is changing, with many companies now converting to flat hierarchy instead of the tall top to bottom management. A memo titled “This is a long email” was how Tony Hsieh CEO of Zappos, an online shoes retailer, made his company to go flat (Greenfield, 2016).

In his memo, Hsieh announced that there would be no more managers, and gave all employees equal roles in decision making, following a self-management approach goes in line with the company culture, “create fun and a little weirdness” is one of its values (Guzman, 2016). The conventional hierarchy is essentially pyramid shaped, with the CEO high on top of the many managers who in turn are on top of the base of employees. However, in the new flat structure, all these layers are flattened into one, making everyone equal. No titles and no higher ups, everyone is expected to lead.

That might sound hectic to you, but it has proven to be effective. According to research, employees in a flat workplace are “way more innovative and their performance is better” (Lemons, 2015). Valve Corp is a successful video game company that has been “manager-free” since 1996. Employee affairs, such as pay or promotion are determined by their coworkers. All 300 of them have their desks on wheels because this flat way of management requires them to move around a lot for meetings and collaborations (Gotkin, 2012). Still, a flat hierarchy can still be adopted with some degree of power given to a manager. Google, for example, hosts a flat workplace but with some degree of power given to managers (Lemons, 2015).

Some companies apply the flat hierarchy by allowing the team to be completely self-managed, while the role of the leader rotates among the members on a weekly basis (Fried, 2011). This tactic helps employees be more empathetic to managers, and managers to employees as they have been put in the position of that responsibility (Fried, 2011). More and more companies adopt the flat hierarchy as it contributes to team building, and the communication is deeper, which results in a decision that is based on a well-informed discussion, instead of giving and taking commands (Schonfeld, 1994). The flat hierarchy is best applied when exhibiting traits such as listening actively for what people are trying to say, and for the manager to use persuasion instead of commanding (Schonfeld, 1994).

Corporations, big or small, ought to try the flat approach in management. You can go as flat as you think suitable for your kind of business, you can even start slow to test the waters. Employees can work to their fullest potential if involved in decision making. Also, if you think about it, you can save up money for the managerial position that is no longer necessary. A founder can do away with managers, executives, and even CEOs, and just directly deal with the working employees.


Greenfield, Rebecca. “Zappos CEO Tony Hsieh: Adopt Holacracy Or Leave.” Fast Company. Fast Company, 24 June 2016. Web. 25 Apr. 2017. <https://www.fastcompany.com/3044417/zappos-ceo-tony-hsieh-adopt-holacracy-or-leave>.

Guzman, Zack. “Zappos CEO Tony Hsieh on Getting Rid of Managers: What I Wish I’d Done Differently.” CNBC. CNBC, 15 Sept. 2016. Web. 25 Apr. 2017. <http://www.cnbc.com/2016/09/13/zappos-ceo-tony-hsieh-the-thing-i-regret-about-getting-rid-of-managers.html>.

Fried, J. (2011). “When the only way up is out: I’ve always run a flat company-no hierarchy, no managers, just smart people focused on their work. Then a prized employee said, ‘I want a promotion’”. Inc, (3). 35. Business Insights: Essentials. Web.

Schonfeld, E. (1994). “Communication Goes Flat.” Fortune 130.5 (1994): 16. Business Source Complete. Web.

Gotkin, Zev. (2012) “America’s Innovative Companies Are Going Flat.” The Huffington Post. N.p., Web. 11 Apr. 2017. <http://www.huffingtonpost.com/zev-gotkin/corporate-hierarchy-work_b_1962345.html>.

Lemons, Jane .(2015). “Flat Management.” SAGE Business Researcher. N.p. Web. 12 Apr. 2017. <http://businessresearcher.sagepub.com/sbr-1645-94858-2644624/20150202/flat-management>.

The History of Messages

Omar Albeshr (@ASRomar10)

Omar Albeshr (@ASRomar10)

Omar, an Emirati from Abu Dhabi, holds a degree in Avionics Engineering, currently works in tourism. He hopes one day he would publish his novels and his poetry book. His column is an exploration with a message, about the origins of words, terms, phrases and the stories behind them.
Omar Albeshr (@ASRomar10)

Latest posts by Omar Albeshr (@ASRomar10) (see all)

Reading Time: 5 minutes

Exploring the previous eras and ways of telecommunication untill they progressed to the current state.

Artwork by Dana AlAttar (twitter: @DanaAlAttar, instagram: @madewithlove.dxb)

In these fast-paced days where people send billions of messages every day whizzing across the globe, we tend to omit from our heads the early beginnings of telecommunication that was used by our ancestors. What did people do when they wanted to send messages across? What means did they have at their disposal and how did they utilize them?

Unlike many of the futile messages today, telecommunication back then came about from a real urge. People needed to communicate danger or messages that were crucial to their survival. Fire was the first tool that people figured out how to harness, not only for its warmth but because light could be seen from a long distance. It was an effective tool that can direct predetermined messages between cities, using a relay of many fire torches and people along the way. In ancient Greece, the news of the Greek victory traveled within a few hours from the city of Troy 600 kilometers to the city of Argos using such a system.

North American tribes capitalized fire in another way to create an even more effective communication tool. They sent their messages by way of Smoke Signals. Every tribe had its own pattern of smoke signals conveying different messages across a large area. A smoke signal from the top of a hill usually meant “danger” to the rest of the tribe. The Chinese also used smoke signals to alert cities of any attacks through many stations, traveling over a distance of 750 kilometers.

In areas where visibility was an issue or big fires were not an option, such as those who lived in the jungles, they turned to another tool. They used drums to telegraph messages at the speed of over 160 kilometers in an hour.

The effectiveness of the above methods of telecommunications relied on many people to create a continuous chain. This meant that if any of the people within the system fell asleep or did not pay attention, the system was compromised and the fate of the message and its purpose was doomed. Also, those messages were not private at all, but broadcast for all to hear or see.

That is why pigeons were used later on to send messages. It was more reliable and private. Two types of pigeons were able to fulfill that purpose: Racing Pigeons and Homing Pigeons. These type of pigeons can travel for hundred of kilometers with a message safely attached to their feet.

These pigeons always flew home, which is why to send a message you had to have a native pigeon from where you want your message to go. As soon as the bird is released, it will fly home. However, these pigeons could also be trained to fly to other locations by experts, where they would create a safe environment for pigeons over multiple locations.

Later on, enemies caught on to this method and were able to intercept these messages by shooting them down.

One heroic racing pigeon called “Cher Ami”, which means “Dear Friend” in French, was given a War Cross medal award for her help in saving 194 soldiers in World War One. The troops were surrounded with no food or ammunition for two whole days, and had their first two pigeons sent for help shot down by the Germans. Upon sending Cher Ami with their help message, the bird was shot to the ground. Despite her chest wound and being blinded in one eye, Cher Ami flew again over 40 kilometers in just 25 minutes and delivered the message to their allies. The troops survived and later Cher Ami was inducted into the Racing Pigeon Hall of Fame in the USA.

In these days, most of these methods are deemed obsolete due to modern technology, but one entity still uses smoke signals to this day. The Vatican City still carries the tradition of announcing its election results of the new Pope through smoke signals. Black smoke for no decision yet, and white smoke to announce the new Pope.

Clearly, communication has come a long way, as with such ease we can interact with each other. Through a click of a button or a simple voice command, we can get our message across the globe. However, what is the content of our messages today? I think we ought to be more careful and exercise some restraint when it comes to communication. We are surpassing the age of information and embarking on a new journey in the age of misinformation. Since our feed is constantly bombarded with falsehood and ‘fake news’, we need to think twice before we push that send button.

#BookSummary David Ogilvy’s Confessions of an Advertising Man

Jumanah Salama (@Juma_nah4)

Jumanah Salama (@Juma_nah4)

Jumanah is a Media and Communication graduate from King Abdulaziz University in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia. Her fields of interest lay in the studies of humanities and through her articles she seeks to create a bridge between sociology and social media.
Jumanah Salama (@Juma_nah4)
Reading Time: 4 minutes

In this guide, the once considered father of modern advertisement uncovers his secrets to a successful advertisement.

Picture was taken by Jumana Salama

David Ogilvy, the father of modern advertisement, started off as a young chef at the Hotel Majestic in Paris. He worked sixty-three hours a week with thirty-seven other chefs under the management of the perfectionist monsieur Pitard who ruled with an iron rod. Pitard was one of the main shaping factors of David’s management process, who went on to set the example of balanced involvement and perfection. David Ogilvy did not earn his title “The Father of Modern Advertisement” before working as a door-to-door salesman, a social worker in the Edinburgh slums, and an associate researcher of Dr. Gallup. In 1948 Ogilvy had founded his advertisement agency Ogilvy & Mather, and by 1962 it had greater revenues than the revenue of Her Majesty’s Government. In this book, or guide to be more specific, he confesses his secrets.

Chapter 1: “How to Manage an Agency”

In this chapter the author tackles the issue of insecure managers, and what is to be expected from both the employee and the manager. He refers to managing advertising agencies as: “managing any other creative organization – a research laboratory, a magazine, an architect’s office, or a great kitchen.”

“This is a new agency, struggling for its life,have not” he wrote as he started the 2nd chapter on “How to Get Clients”. “For some time we shall be overworked” he continues “and underpaid”. It’s important for new establishments to escape obscurity and Ogilvy did so by four main steps:

  1. Inviting ten reporters from an advertising trade press to lunch and spoke of his insane ambition and starting off from scratch.
  2. Following Edward L. Bernay’s advice to make no more than two speeches a year.
  3. Making friends with men whose jobs brought them in contact with major advertisers.
  4. Sending progress reports to people in every walk of life.

He weighs in on his self-advertisement tactics by writing: “Gentle reader, if you are shocked by these confessions of self-advertisement, I can only plead that if I had behaved in a more professional way, it would have taken me twenty years to arrive.”

Chapter 3: “How to Keep Your Clients” the author sets four rules for his employees:

  1. Devote your best employees to your clients instead of diverting them to new employees not have learned your style yet.
  2. Avoid hiring unstable, quarrelsome executives.
  3. Avoid taking on clients who have a record of firing their agencies at frequent intervals.
  4. Keep in contact with your clients at all levels.

He later emphasizes the importance of admitting your mistakes before you are charged with them and maintaining a good relationship with the clients will make it easier to deal with mistakes.

In the 5th chapter “How to Be a Good Client”, he offers tips to future clients through previous experiences, and in the 6th chapter he writes on “How to Build Great Campaigns” based on research and experience. The remaining chapters target illustrated and television advertisement, and focus on food and tourism campaigns. He ends his book by offering advice to the young aiming to rise to the top of the pyramid.

Ogilvy is quite generous in offering his experiences as supporting evidence of his advice in many advertising fields, everywhere from tourism to coffee advertisement, which makes it easier for the reader to relate to his advice. I have personally learned the value of employee-costumer relations for a successful outcome. As well as the importance of taking responsibility for mistakes in the workforce instead of playing the blame game. Nevertheless, it’s important for the reader to remember that this book was written in different times and some notes may no longer apply nor level up to today’s social standards.

Batman, Superman, and Logan Walked Into A Coffee Shop- The Beauty of @MEFCC

Deenah Rashid (@Deena_Rashid_)

Deenah Rashid (@Deena_Rashid_)

Editor at Sail Publishing
Deena is a recently graduated student who completed her Bachelor’s in International studies with a specialization in Culture and Society. She currently works at an art gallery in Dubai, but is also a freelance editor/proofreader and writer.
Deenah Rashid (@Deena_Rashid_)

Latest posts by Deenah Rashid (@Deena_Rashid_) (see all)

Reading Time: 4 minutes

Middle East Film & Comic Con (MEFCC) started only a few years ago at the Dubai International Marine Club. Back then it was a small event, with a spark that has now become Comic Con’s distinctive atmosphere. There are and always will be detractors and critics of MEFCC, myself included, finding fault with some of its commercial and celebrity-driven aspects. Regardless, the spirit of Comic Con is passionate and honest, and the fact that no one is too weird, too “out there”, or too overdressed is liberating. Everyone’s focus is on the imagination and creativity that brings these characters to life, unweaving the strands of fiction. At Comic Con, it is difficult for anyone to look “weird”.

Picture taken by Deenah Rashid

There were a lot of great changes in this year’s edition of MEFCC. The increased focus on games was brilliant since generally, it has focused more on films/TV shows. The “Overwatch” tournament was incredible to watch – so many people who truly love the game were competing against each other, with stands and massive screens for passersby. The extended arcade section was also a good addition, and seeing teenagers who are too young to have played at arcades in their childhood was a sweet sight. I still think the gaming part of Comic Con has a long way to go, but it’s definitely improving.

Picture taken by Deenah Rashid

One of the major changes that I appreciated was the introduction of the International Artists’ Alley. This was new, and it worked well. I met several comic book artists and directors of publishing studios from outside the UAE who were impressed by the regional artists and excited to meet them. Bringing international artists means that local illustrators and designers get the chance to connect, collaborate, and perhaps find some exposure abroad as well. This is essential, as the comic book industry here is still very young, and meeting and learning from people elsewhere is always helpful.

I especially liked the layout this year, which was much more open and inviting than in the previous years. The sectioning was systematic, and the bookstores and toy shops in between worked very well. I walked around and saw almost everything in one day, although more than half of the fun of Comic Con is seeing the cosplays, which means a one-day visit is never quite enough.

Cosplays are truly the heart and soul of this convention. The effort and commitment that people put into their costumes are intense, and seeing your favorite characters from TV shows, games, films, and comic books come to life is always a fantastic experience. That moment when you spot in the crowd, a cosplay that is done so well, and acted out so brilliantly – that is the moment of utter excitement and joy that I go to Comic Con for.

I’m not quite sure why Comic Conventions around the world invite wrestlers though, perhaps because they play their part in pop culture, but the general line-up of celebrities this year was pretty decent. Celebrities are only one part of Comic Con, but if I were to recommend something, I would say it would be better if they provided a panel talk of actors from the same game/TV show/film, rather than actors from everything on one panel. The dynamic between them is always off, and it doesn’t quite fully capture any actor’s part in their work.

All in all, I would say, as a fan of Comic Con, this year was a massive improvement from last year. The artists were better, the setup was much cleaner, the music better as well (although it was still extremely loud), and the cosplays were awesome. Thank you MEFCC, you did well.

Lesson Learned– Spend Time With Your Loved Ones

Abdulla Alwahedi (@Alwahedi)

Abdulla Alwahedi (@Alwahedi)

Column: Emirati Reflections
Abdulla holds a Bachelor of Science in Electrical Engineering and a Master’s in Business Administration. His abstract passion for history and literature with a hint of photography adds to his noble enduring quality. Abdulla enjoys visiting museums, art exhibitions and likes to spend his spare time in the outdoors. His column “Emirati Reflections” is a mixture of stories from the past and insights of the present, which blend together and formulate his understanding of the UAE’s culture.
Abdulla Alwahedi (@Alwahedi)

Latest posts by Abdulla Alwahedi (@Alwahedi) (see all)

Reading Time: 6 minutes

What are the lessons we learn after the sudden loss of a family member?

Artwork by Hamda AlMansoori (instagram: @Planet64, twitter: @planetsixtyfour)

I published my last article in the summer of 2016, and since then I have been suffering from writer’s block. I don’t know the reasons behind that block, but one thing I am sure about, is the fact that not being able to write is very painful. Writing for me is a way of expressing my feelings and a relief from the daily stress or pressures I might go through in life.

Today, I am back to writing to convey to you an experience I have gone through recently. An experience that made me realize that life is too short, so we need to utilize that time and spend as much time as possible with our loved ones and give them the love and appreciation they deserve.

A few weeks ago, I lost a family member who symbolized the true definition of purity and peace through his character. My uncle Murtatha was not a regular person, he had a heart full of peace and love without limitations. His death was a shock to the family.

His suffering began when he was diagnosed with cancer about 3 months ago. This was a surprise to us all. Yes, he was old, but he was in good shape for his age. His health deteriorated so quickly, and we received news about his worsening health condition daily. It was then that I decided to fly to Bahrain and pay him a visit in the hospital. As soon as I arrived in Bahrain, I went straight to the hospital.

I was hoping to see him and remind him of the days when he used to take me swimming in Khatt Springs. I wanted to remind him of the stories he used to tell me about his life between Ras Al Khaimah and Bahrain. I had so many things in mind, but none of it was possible. When I reached the hospital, I came to know that the night before I arrived, he was transferred to the Intensive Care Unit (ICU). I was in complete shock; I didn’t know what to do. I was confused and had mixed feelings about the situation. The fact that he was transferred to the ICU meant that he was at a higher risk from what I expected.

I rushed to the ICU, but I was not allowed to visit him. I was asked by the security guards to sit in the waiting area until the doctors allowed visits. There were many people in the waiting room including other family members. Everyone was busy reading the Quran and praying for their loved ones. After almost an hour, they started allowing people to visit but it was very restricted. Only one person per patient would be allowed in at any given time and was allowed a total of 5 minutes.

As much as I was eager to enter the ICU and see him, I wasn’t sure if I wanted to anymore because seeing other people visit their loved ones and leaving the ICU with their eyes full of tears made me anxious. While I was busy thinking, the security guard called me and said: “Sir, it is your turn now. You may enter the room. Your patient is in room 6 on the right”. I was hesitant as well as scared and did not want to enter. I asked my brother to go in first, but he refused and asked me to enter the room before him.

With every step towards the ICU, my heart beats increased. The short distance to room 6 seemed to be very long. I didn’t have any choices but to go into his room. The room didn’t have a door; just a curtain separating him and me. As I stood at the entrance, I could not go any further. With so many questions hitting me all at once, I did not know what to do. I kept asking if I should go closer to him or just look at him from a distance. The nurse stepped back so I can get closer to him, but I couldn’t move.

He was lying on the bed, surrounded by medical equipment, and during my stay with him, I didn’t notice any sign of life. I stood there looking at him and remembered every conversation we had, every moment and memory we had shared. At that moment, I wished he would wake up, so I would remind him of our moments together. In those 5 minutes I wished for so many things, but I guess it was too late.

I left the room with my eyes full of tears. It is not easy to see your loved ones helpless when you can’t do anything to help them out. As I walked out of the ICU and moved away from the waiting room; I had to hide my tears from my sister and cousin who waited for me outside. I didn’t want them to be devastated and had to pull up my strength and come back to the room and be with them.

I could not stay long as I had to go back to the UAE and wasn’t sure whether I would see him again or not. I asked my sister to keep me posted with developments of his health. I left the hospital hoping his health condition would improve. I still had hope for a miracle.

Unfortunately, the miracle did not happen, and my uncle passed away the next day. It was a big loss. On that day, I wished I could throw myself on my late grandmothers’ lap just like when I was a child when my mom used to yell at me.

I felt very lonely, and I was in pain. However, being surrounded by my friends and family eased it. Although death is a fact that we have to accept, it is the feeling of loss that is more painful. Since that day I have decided to give my family more time and attention because they truly deserve it.

May you rest in peace, my great uncle. You will be truly missed.